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Mark Cuban: Pro-playoff American hero

Rick Carlisle, Mark Cuban

Love him or hate him, it’s likely a universal opinion that there’s absolutely nothing subtle about Mark Cuban.

Hopefully, that lack of subtlety is about to slap some much-needed sense into the current system used to determine a national champion in college football.

Armed with an inspired stroke of genius that has almost no chance of coming to fruition because of the cartel currently in place, the billionaire owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks tells ESPNDallas.com that he is in the exploratory stages of creating and funding a (gasp!) playoff system for Div. 1-A football.  Cuban said he has already spoken to two athletic directors at BcS conferences that were “extremely enthusiastic” about a proposal that would, essentially, throw a boatload of money at the schools, and that he intends to contact several school presidents and state senators in an attempt to gauge whether it’s an idea worth pursuing further.

“The more I think about it, the more sense it makes as opposed to buying a baseball team,” said Cuban, who tried to buy the Chicago Cubs and Texas Rangers within the last few years. “You can do something the whole country wants done.” …

Cuban said he envisions either a 12- or 16-team playoff field with the higher seeds getting homefield advantage. The homefield advantage, Cuban said, would ensure the college football regular-season games would not lose any importance.

The bowl games could still exist under Cuban’s plan, but he said he would make it more profitable for programs to make the playoffs than a bowl.

“Put $500 million in the bank and go to all the schools and pay them money as an option,” Cuban said. “Say, ‘Look, I’m going to give you X amount every five years. In exchange, you say if you’re picked for the playoff system, you’ll go.’ “

I applaud Cuban — hell, I’ll even give him a standing ovation — for his hatred of the BcS and desire to throw money at getting rid of it, but I will continue to maintain that the only way the BcS will go away and a playoff system will appear is, sadly, government intervention.  These school presidents and conference commissioners are fully aware of the fact that they are leaving money on the table by eschewing a playoff, and know that television networks would be lining up to shower the institutions with billions and billions of dollars.

No doubt it’s a righteous idea, Mr. Cuban, but I’m afraid your playoff proposal will meet the same fate as your twin forays into purchasing stick & ball clubs.  I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think so.

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46 Responses to “Mark Cuban: Pro-playoff American hero”
  1. jamie54 says: Dec 16, 2010 11:02 AM

    Government intervention? One of the stupidest comments I’ve heard. Government has no business sticking its nose into legislating how colleges should or should not manage their sports teams. Ridiculous. Should the government stick its nose into how you set up your blog site, what you write? Dumb, just plain dumb. Government has enough to try and handle let alone setting time aside for something like this. Don’t like how the BCS is setup? Don’t watch the games dummy, nobodys forcing you to.

  2. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 11:06 AM

    john taylor, quick question here

    since your so in favor of a playoff system, how will you decide who those 12-16 teams are?

    will we have a playoff for a playoff?

    Maybe we should just keep the BCS in order to find out who the best 12-16 teams are…..oh wait but then that would be using the big bigot system to find out who the best teams are……..

    so someone tell me, since you are all on your playoff high horse, how will you pick the 16 best teams in the country?

    Coaches polls?
    AP poll?
    Fan vote?

  3. florida727 says: Dec 16, 2010 11:44 AM

    John, I usually agree with your thought process (and enjoy your writing style), but not on this one. “jamie” is right. the last thing this needs is government intervention. I’m thinking of how well those whole bailout and healthcare things have worked out :) This is a business. Cuban is a businessman. For a long time I’ve always felt our country would be better off if a businessman were President (assuming he/she wasn’t a total whack job that just so happen to succeed in a business). Cuban can pull this off. He’s smart, he’s passionate, he surrounds himself with capable people, and he has the resources. I hope he pursues it. I’d jump on his team in a heartbeat to work on something like this… as I’m sure most of your readers would.

  4. gorilladunk says: Dec 16, 2010 12:28 PM

    John, I have to agree with your comments about gov’t intervention. It will (literally) take an act of congress to get these school presodents off their asses and do what the American public is screaming for. You threaten to withhold funding that goes to state colleges and universities, you’ll get their attention. As long as you’ve got idiot-asses like that poindexter running Ohio State and his ilk, you’ll never see the ONLY NCAA sport that doesn’t have a championship tournament change course.

  5. soflatrojan says: Dec 16, 2010 12:29 PM

    I would like to see a playoff that consisted of all the conference winners in D1. You win your conference you’re in, you lose you go bowling.

    As for the independents find a home you do it in other sports.

    I would love to see Cuban pull this off. We have missed out on so many good games over the years. I would have loved to see USC and UF have a chance to play in 2008. Not that a playoff would have made that happen but you can guarantee some of these teams that just lay down in the MNC would not make it that far.

    Championships should be won on the field.

  6. florida727 says: Dec 16, 2010 12:29 PM

    replying to “edgy”… just my opinion, but in response to your question about how to pick the 16 best teams – fan vote? No. Obvious reason: too biased and whoever can get the most people to call in, they’d qualify (think Notre Dame at 7-5 getting in).

    Coaches poll? Probably not. Though less biased, they’d still find to a way to play favorites, maybe not among the top 10-12, but certainly could be enough to influence 15-16 (for example).

    AP poll? Put it in the hands of writers/media people? I’d rather take my chances with a fan vote :) Some of those guys don’t watch a game if it’s not broadcast from their own market, let alone in their own market.

    There has to be a “reliable” computer system that either already exists, or can be created, that truly takes into account all variables: weather played in, competition, home v. road success, etc., to identify the top 16. Will there be controversy? Of course, it’s sports.

    But once you get past the first round, the doubts should be erased, for the most part. The reason why 16 is the best number to use, IMO, is that it requires FOUR wins to become National Champion. You can pull off an unset, maybe even two, but the cream will rise to the top far more often than not… the title WILL be won ON the field, without teams #3 or 4 or 8 being able to “legitimately” lay claim as being the best. They’ll have had to earn that right to brag…

  7. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 12:30 PM

    It’s pretty close to what I’ve been advocating but I believe in keeping the bowls and using them for the Finals. The 16 teams would ultimately get a trip to the 8 designated BCS bowls (4 minor for the first round losers and the 4 current BCS bowls for the final 8).

  8. cubano76 says: Dec 16, 2010 12:52 PM

    C’mon and Cuban can’t be wrong!

  9. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 12:52 PM

    florida727 says:

    ********
    Not to get too political but the bailout, which started with Bush, is actually going to MAKE money and healthcare doesn’t kick in until 2014 and isn’t as bad as Fox Noise wants everyone to believe but why let the truth get in the way of your anti-government rant.

    P.S. – I can’t help but laugh at the fact that there are so many that are anti-government with the playoff but they were also cheering them on for going after steroid users.

    John isn’t advocating government intervention but that the only way that HE sees a playoff is if they get involved. The BCS Buster is a solution to keeping from being sued and the possibility of government intervention at the state or national level from the non-AQ representatives. Government intervention is the reason why some schools even play each other because it was well known that this was the only way that a bigger school would ever schedule a rival. My best guess is that John’s first, last and best option is that these guys wake up to the reality of a playoff and that they find a way to make it and the bowls work but he’s a REALIST and doesn’t see anything short of a shotgun wedding bring this to fruition.

  10. florida727 says: Dec 16, 2010 12:58 PM

    One sentence hardly qualifies as a “rant”, but, whatever…

    Bottom line is that a BUSINESSMAN is in a far better position than a POLITICIAN to make this idea a reality. And Mark Cuban has already proven his capabilities in that arena.

  11. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 1:02 PM

    real edgy,

    please tell me, i honestly want your opinion here, how will you determine the 16 teams that deserve to go to the playoffs?

    you are a major advocate of playoffs so the little guys get a chance, but what difference does a playoff make, there would still be disputes about who deserves to be #16 vs #17

    if a 3 loss Iowa sits at #16 and a 1 loss Nevada sits at #17, are you going to cry that they dont get a chance or a “fair shot”?

    are we just big bigots until we make a playoff system that involves every D-1 school?

  12. blitz4848 says: Dec 16, 2010 1:40 PM

    Pick the 16

    Top 3 SEC teams
    2 Big 10
    1 Pac 10
    1 Big 12
    9 highest ranked teams in coaches poll that don’t qualify above

    5 = independents, small conferences, crummy conferences (Big East/ACC) and if one of the conferences above have more great teams than their allotment then they could get in as well.
    This could be tweaked after several yrs but right now would reflect the balance of power in college football.

  13. blitz4848 says: Dec 16, 2010 1:41 PM

    5 = should be 9 = (sorry typo)

  14. endsports says: Dec 16, 2010 2:15 PM

    Let’s see, they play a 12 game schedule now. The conference championship game makes 13. To win a 16 team playoff makes the season 17 games, one game longer than the NFL regular season.

    The heck with paying the schools $500 million, that money should be divided up by the players!

  15. blitz4848 says: Dec 16, 2010 3:12 PM

    On the schedule part

    12/4–13 games incl conf ch done
    12/11–rd 1
    12/18– rd 2
    12/25–off wk
    1/3–semi-finals
    1/10–NC game

    from 12/19 through 1/2 all bowl games

    FCS have playoffs so they play 14 game schedules with NO bye weeks

    The FBS would have at least 2 bye weeks and play 3 more games.

    These schools all practice until they play their bowl game so now they would play games on Saturdays if they are in the playoffs.
    You could also incorporate the “major” bowls into the qtr, semi and final rds.

    This could work in a format like this or tweaked some and will make the schools a lot more $$$ than they get now and maybe even enough to start giving players a mthly stipend.

  16. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 3:29 PM

    If you go to my site (Subject: I Bring It Up Again), it explains it all BUT in a nutshell, here’s what it comes down to is this: 4 permanent BCS conferences and 4 transition conferences (ACC and Big East proponents, avert your eyes). The permanent are Big-10ish, Big-12ish, Pac-12 and SEC. The transition are ACC, Big East, Conference USA and MWC (I had the WAC but the breakup has weakened them too much). The champion of each of these conferences are seeded 1-8 and host a first round game (Seeds are determined by BCS standings. In the first round, conference champions get 1-8 while other participants get 9-16 according to BCS seeds. All rounds after that are seeded 1-8 by BCS seed and regardless of whether a team wins their conference or not).

    The at-large are chosen from the highest remaining seeds BUT no more than 2 per conference. Someone once asked me why only two and frankly, it’s because it’s real easy for people to say “So and so is the greatest conference ever” and then in the bowl games, they fall flat on their faces because they really faced a lot of soft teams and folded against real competition. Two should be plenty enough because if some people here had their druthers, there’s be 12 Big-10 or 12 SEC teams and 4 teams that you can pull out of a hat. You can complain all you want about this diluting the field but the ACC or Big East champion has had automatic bids to the BCS and some of their teams, like this year, haven’t been up to par with even the Conference USA champions.

  17. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 3:38 PM

    BTW, it should be noted, too embarrassed to use his real screen name, that there ARE Big Bigots that believe that a 3 loss Big 10ish team is better than a 1 or 2 loss Pac-10 team so it’s not like you guys haven’t Bigoted yourselves. The fact is that you guys argue over SEC vs Big 10 so really, where the hell do YOU draw the line? You’re pissing and moaning about a WAC team but let’s get real, you’d also be pissing and moaning about some of the other BCS conferences because YOU really can’t deal honestly with your own conferences strengths or weakness.

    I can tell you that Big 10 people are lining up like they did years ago when they talked about how they should have a rematch in the NCG because Ohio State and Michigan were “clearly the best two teams” and both of them were beaten so badly that child services had to be brought in to give them protective custody. You guys overrate the Big 10 and that’s why there has to be a system that keeps guys like you from ginning it to put more teams in than it deserves.

  18. terrydactyls says: Dec 16, 2010 4:03 PM

    Forget the automatic bids and create a system for ranking teams that is fair to all and then take the top

  19. terrydactyls says: Dec 16, 2010 4:04 PM

    16 regardless of what conference they are in. Who cares if three from one conference make the playoffs? Or even four if they are deserving? Just get the best and let them play.

  20. rabiddog20 says: Dec 16, 2010 4:21 PM

    They should do 8 team playoff.
    The 6 BCS Conference Champions + 2 at large teams.

    Edgy, you can pick the 2 at large teams so you won’t have anything to cry about.

  21. mchelfrich says: Dec 16, 2010 5:37 PM

    Hopefully every will someday realize that playoff or bowls, college football will still be a money grab which has decided to toss out its pagentry and tradition. With that many teams, have nots will always have something to complain about because there will always be teams on the “bubble” who get screwed.

  22. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 5:42 PM

    rabiddog20 says:

    *******************

    For a genius, you sure as hell want to allow two down right pieces of trailer trash conferences to have automatic bids. Yeah, you’ve impressed the hell out of me.

  23. blitz4848 says: Dec 16, 2010 5:47 PM

    Who else but Edgy could be so eloquent………..

  24. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 5:54 PM

    Yeah, blitz, you sure as hell have had nothing but Pulitzer Prize winning prose in your comments. I’d show you but you seem to hate people quoting you…

  25. mrcowpatty says: Dec 16, 2010 6:12 PM

    So what happens when the Independents schedule all their games against cup cakes? Can you imagine what would happen if the Irish and BYU went undefeated every year and never played a team in the top 50. Who is going to tell them they can’t play for a National Championship? You better be careful what you wish for, because the next thing that will happen is everyone will want to be an Independent. And remember when your an Independent you get to keep all the money.

  26. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 6:35 PM

    edgy will never learn.

    no system will be perfect. my example was exactly right because the debate will just be brought up once again, you just decided to no to listen and insert your own convoluted speech. the bcs rankings will never be perfect, and the way I mocked TCU and Boise St. this year will occur once again when a current non AQ is competing for that last spot versus a current AQ team who has a worse record.

    please tell me how this debate will not come up again under a playoff system?

  27. tmb333 says: Dec 16, 2010 7:03 PM

    You need to have all conferences involved to tip this deal. The answer is and has always been:

    A 16 team playoff

    Require all conferences to have divisions and a conference championship game. The CCG winner gets an automatic bid. (11 conferences)

    The losers of the CCG enter into a pool of at-large eligible teams. The five at-large bids come from this pool of teams.

    This format does several things. It keeps the importance on the conference regular season AND it affords teams aa chance to play better out of conference games early in the season. In theory, Ohio State could play LSU, Alabama, Texas and USC out of conference and lose all four games yet win the Big 10 CCG and enter the playoff. There would be no reason to play 1AA teams.

    To keep voters involved, use the BCS or a revised method to select the five at-large from the pool of 11. They could also use the BCS to seed the playoffs. My only change would be that the BCS would only be released after the CCG were played. This would keep voters from manipulating the system.

  28. tmb333 says: Dec 16, 2010 7:09 PM

    Also, after the first two weeks of the playoffs, there are four teams left. The 12 losers along with all the other bowl eligible teams could still participate in bowls. You would want to start the playoffs over Thanksgiving weekend to maximize television exposure a viewership.

    Play round two the first weekend in December. You should then break until all other bowl games are completed to play the final four. Require all bowl games to be played by January 3rd.

  29. tmb333 says: Dec 16, 2010 7:48 PM

    To see this years playoff, visit http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/group.php?gid=184480971970

  30. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 8:27 PM

    Listen, too embarrassed to admit to everyone that he’s a buckeye fan, you’re argument is STUPID. The fact is that the Big 10 uses the same sh*t over and over to bully their way into the bowls. “We travel better than any conference” is your biggest mantra for being an at-large in the BCS. You DON’T want to talk about your accomplishments because even when the conference was down, their whole mantra when bullying their way into bowl berths is that you travel well. You know, if I lived in a snow bound area, I might travel well, too so I could get some relief but that doesn’t necessarily mean that this is a reason for me to be considered a great fan. Hell, if that’s the case then the snowbirds in Miami are the greatest sports fans in the world!

    The Big 10 and their fans are always trying to talk as if they and ONLY they deserve to be kings of the hill. It’s their belief that their 7-5 teams are even better than than a 10-2 SEC team and they make no bones about how they feel about their conference, even if they’re getting their asses whipped while their braying on. If I had to name THE WORST BIG BIGOT conference, it IS the Big 10 and the worst part about it is that you’ve got nothing to bray about. I thought you guys were going to orgasm all over yourselves last year after a 4-3 record and you ended a 6 game BCS losing streak and all I can do is laugh at how you’re conference has been an abject failure during the BCS era and the only thing that saves you from being the ACC or Big East is that Ohio State won a NC (though, the fans at Miami will differ greatly on that fact).

    That being said, I hate Big Bigots because they’re un-American. Yeah, you heard me. In this country, ANYONE can be anything that they want, IF they’re given the opportunity but Big Bigots don’t believe in opportunity; they believe in the elitist system of the country that we broke away from. Only those born with a silver spoon sticking out of their ass need apply for BCS Bigotry. I understand that you believe that this argument will come up, hell, you bozos still don’t believe that mid-majors should get a seat at the Big Boys table in the NCAA tournament and it’s been a long time since that argument started so it doesn’t surprise me that you’re too elitist to ever believe that everyone should be afforded the opportunity to be anything that they want.

  31. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 8:48 PM

    ok fine suckass edgy, who is better

    an 8-3 USC team ranked at #16 (in the future and out of sanctions of course) and a 10-1 Boise St. team ranked #17

    who deserves to go? who earns that last playoff spot?

    I ask you now and am calling you out, answer my question or forever shut your mouth

  32. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 8:50 PM

    oh and genius edgy i openly mock you and blitz to show how stupid you both are

    read the title of my name it says “and I love Ohio State”

    tell me mr. “educated” how is that saying that I don’t like Ohio State

    or is this post too over your head?

  33. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 9:20 PM

    Hey, too embarrassed to use his own screen n name. You are retarded. I didn’t say that you didn’t like them but that you’re too embarrassed to use your old screen name.

  34. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 9:23 PM

    Boy, the Forest Buckeyeboy has shown me, hasn’t he. Hell, you retarded, I’ll give it to you straight: Boise State IS better than USC THIS YEAR and man, this is how stupid you are: USC at 8-3 and Boise at 10-1 would still have a game to play – RETARD.

  35. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 9:27 PM

    Oh and Forest Buckeyeboy, why do you have to wait for me to slap you around before you change your screen name? Seems like you were too embarrassed before and even now, you’re embarrassed to let anyone know who you are. Buckeyeboy is as Buckeyeboy does…

  36. blitz4848 says: Dec 16, 2010 9:28 PM

    @buckeyeboy

    I know who you are and who you root for so what the f%#k are you tsalking about? You were buckeyeboy before you morhed into the
    Edgy wannabe whatever……

  37. edgy says: Dec 16, 2010 9:31 PM

    BuckeyeGump, why is it that you only talk about excluding teams? You don’t seem to have any positive things to say about anything except that you’re positive about what teams that you’d exclude. You’re pretty adamant about picking apart others ideas but you certainly don’t seem to want to show everyone YOUR idea.

  38. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 9:32 PM

    damn edgy you really are a moron lol

    it was a hypothetical example for your boys at 8-3 vs your other boys at 10-1

    that debate will still exist no matter if there is a playoff or not

    i cant believe you are too dumb to realize that someone will always be left out and be mad lol i mean like duh you idiot

  39. edgy loves (insert overrated MWC/WAC team) and I love Ohio State says: Dec 16, 2010 9:34 PM

    oh and wanna be genius, my opinion is that a playoff can work but people will always be left out and the debate will ensue like the debate occurred this year

    lol i cant believe i had to state it out to your childish mind edgy

  40. endsports says: Dec 17, 2010 10:22 AM

    A 17 game season for the two participants in a championship game?

    The players should get most of the money Cuban wants to spend.

  41. edgy says: Dec 17, 2010 10:48 AM

    God, too embarrassed to show everyone that he’s really buckeyeboy, you really are a pip.

    Seriously, after seeing people for the past 40 GD years whining about X team, with a 14-19 record, from the Big-10 not getting an invite while Y team, with a 30-3 record, from a mid major did, you think that I don’t know that there will be MORONS like you who will be whining and wailing about how teams are getting excluded in favor of supposedly unworthy teams. Unlike YOU, buckwheat, I don’t have unreal expectations and I don’t believe that a 9-3 or 8-4 USC is more worthy than a team that went 11- 1 in the WAC or in the Mountain West. Hell, it’s no worse than watching an undefeated Cincinnati (guffaw) team go in the BCS and have their skirts lifted over their heads and being administered as severe a beating as any supposedly highly ranked undefeated BCS team has taken since — gasp — Ohio State.

    Unlike you, I won’t be crying if an unworthy Pac-10 team gets passed over so save your sanctimony for another Big Bigot because your kind doesn’t understand anything but elitism.

  42. edgy says: Dec 17, 2010 11:09 AM

    BTW, too embarrassed about his identity, you still haven’t put forward your solution. Why is that? You are a buckwheat of exclusion so why not show us that you actually have a plan instead of some lame excuse of an exclusionary policy based on the fact that you’re too stupid to come up with a positive solution (and don’t steal anyone else’s solution).

  43. deathtoallpoets says: Dec 17, 2010 4:46 PM

    so down with a playoff system. i might actually enjoy watching college football.

  44. edgy says: Dec 18, 2010 2:25 PM

    Let me once again utter the “P” word and say that not only was last night’s game between Eastern Washington and Villanova a decent game, today’s Div II title game between Minnesota-Duluth vs Delta State was an hell of a game that came down to a last second kick. Hate on the lower divisions for whatever Big Bigot reason that you might have but not only do they do it right but they also seem to have more fun because they don’t have a bunch of stuffed shirts in the stands who can’t enjoy the game, no matter the outcome.

  45. Ben Kercheval says: Dec 18, 2010 3:08 PM

    Those two games were pretty good. I especially enjoyed the Eastern Washington game once I was able to look beyond the red field …

  46. edgy says: Dec 18, 2010 3:24 PM

    I was actually thinking of cake when I was watching the game. :)

    It’s much harder on the eyes than Boise’s.

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